U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, right, talking with farmers at the Boone County Fair. (Photo by DeAnne Bloomberg)
By: DeAnne Bloomberg
When U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Channahon, met with farmers during the first day of the Boone County Fair, it didn’t take long for the conversation to veer toward trade. And Kinzinger was ready, calling for a vote in the U.S. House on the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) shortly after representatives return from their August recess.
“We are calling on the Democratic-led House to put it on the floor,” Kinzinger told leaders from Boone, Winnebago, Ogle and DeKalb County Farm Bureaus. “They don’t all have to vote for it, but at least give it a vote. It will pass the Senate. It will be a better deal.”
Kinzinger continues to push for passage.
“USMCA helps increase the amount of ag products that we export and are sold,” he said. “More fairness for American farmers. Better for U.S. auto manufacturing. Short of that being implemented, let’s keep NAFTA (the North American Free Trade Agreement) in place.”
Winnebago-Boone Farm Bureau President Richard Beuth said substantial damage has already been done.
“Tariffs take years and years to get this market back. We are not losing it for just this year. We are losing it for many, many years,” he said.
“You are all on the front lines of the trade war. We need to find new markets for the U.S. This includes an opportunity to renegotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership,” Kinzinger added.
“We are at a loss to our competitors. We are locked out of that Japanese market,” said Ogle County hog farmer Daniel Deuth. “Since President Trump tweeted a week ago Monday, we’ve lost $35 per head on hogs. We are at a disadvantage to Japan, and Mexico has not come back to us.”
DeAnne Bloomberg serves as Illinois Farm Bureau director of issue management.
Content for this story was provided by FarmWeekNow.com.